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Friday, January 31, 2014

1309 Newton Street Key West - Bank Owned Fixer Upper

There are two, no make that three certainties in life in Key West: (1) Death: (2) Taxes; (3) Lots of buyers for Bank Owned Houses.  1309 Newton Street Key West is a Bank Owned property that was just listed, but not by me.It's a fixer-upper that is offered for sale at $249,900.  I spent about ten minutes at the property taking photos. Three other Realtors popped in and out of the house during those ten minutes.  I would suggest that a lot of other agents were there as well that day because this little house is offered at a price point that a lot of potential buyers can afford.
I went to the Sanborn Fire Maps and found 1309 Newton Street first shown in the 1892 edition. The 1300 block of Newton Street was obscured by an overly of another area. So it's a guess as to whether this house was built earlier.  Numerous other houses were built in the same area which is only a block south of the old Army barracks.  The black and white photo above was taken in 1965. It shows metal louvered shutters on the front porch and a modern awning (for that time period) that extends out just a bit. Compare and contrast that black and white photo to the two current color photos that show the same porch and entry that I took.  You will see the metal louvers and awning are gone and replaced with opaque glass louvered windows.  It looks like the porch became some type of living space.
The old front windows now have shutters that open into the enclosed porch room. A long hallway leads from the front door through the kitchen that was added a few years ago to the back "family room" that was also an addition.  A second bedroom is entered just off the kitchen.
There is a small back deck just off the rear bank of windows and door. There is not enough room for a pool. A new owner could put in a hot tub which is portable (removable). No permit is needed for that.
A new owner might consider converting the porch "room" into a real front porch; gutting the interior rooms and reconfiguring the house to create two nice sized bedrooms with a shared bath; install a new kitchen; replace the mix of various windows with historically correct windows; repair or replace the roof as needed (there is a leak in the family room); and maybe shrink the size of the family room to create more deck area at the rear. We spend a lot of time outdoors in Key West. This home could be so much more if the deck area were larger and if the family room widows were replaced by French doors that open to the outdoors. CLICK HERE to view more photos I took of this property. This is a very narrow lot. A new owner will need to make nice with the neighbors to fix up the exterior sides.

CLICK HERE to view the Key West Association of Realtors mls datasheet on this property.  Even updated this house in my opinion will be a regular home. Buyers who want a place they can rent out as a vacation rental should probably find a place with a larger outdoor space. Buyers who want a flip project need to really consider the cost of doing all the projects that I suggest (or that you and your architect or builder might consider).  I personally don't think this is a flip project at this time. But if you buy this property at this time, fix it up, and hold it for several years, property values will increase and you will have the opportunity to participate in the price appreciation.

Please call me, Gary Thomas, 305-766-2642 or send me an email at  I am a buyers agent and a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties Key West.  Let me help you find your place in Paradise.


Anonymous said...

A lot of potential. It will be interesting how high the bidding goes. The starting price is very low for the current market.

Ashley Prince said...
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Key West, Florida, United States
I first read about Key West in a magazine called "After Dark" sometime in the mid 1970's. But it wasn't until March 1984 that I made my first visit to the island that would become my home. I had two weeks for a vacation and reserved a room at Colours Guesthouse (now Marrero's Guest House) for one week. I thought that if I didn't like Key West, I could always go back to Miami or Ft. Lauderdale for the rest of my trip. But after a couple of days in Key West, that was no longer a consideration. But when I wanted to extend my stay for the extra week I found there was no room at the inn. The guesthouse owner did find me a room at LaTeDa, the infamous guesthouse/restaurant. That's a story I'll write another day. But those two weeks in Key West gave me the realization that I had found Paradise. Key West has been my home since 1993 and my only regret is that it took me so long to get here. I am a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties CRI. Let me help you find your new home or business in Paradise. Living in Paradise is not a slogan, it's a way of life.